Recently I listened to a talk from one of LinkedIn’s Top Voices, Shari Levitin, on connecting with your prospects. She stated that with the rise of social media, Americans get exposed to the equivalent of 175 newspapers per day… 175!
So, how on earth is your brand going to stand out with all that background noise? It takes more than offering a compelling product or service. To get the attention of your prospects, you’re going to have to connect with them on a personal level.
Here at Voxus, we’ve been revamping our lead generation strategy over the last couple of years. We’ve found that outbound email marketing campaigns resonate most with our prospects, but with a big caveat. It may go without saying, but the spray and pray strategy is never effective when it comes to connecting with your prospects, and it certainly won’t make you stand out against your competition. To do that, you’re going to need to provide tangible value with your marketing messaging.
What is a persona?
Connecting with your prospects on a personal level requires a few steps. First, you need to establish some parameters around what makes them a marketing qualified lead (MQL). Take a look at some of your best customers and identify what they have in common. Have they gone through multiple funding rounds? Is there a CMO in place? What key performance indicators (KPIs) do they have in common? The aforementioned questions are some of the metrics we look at here at Voxus, but they will be unique to every organization.
Once you identify the KPIs for your prospects, you can start creating personas around your marketing qualified leads (or potential buyers). According to Hubspot, buyer personas “are semi-fictional representations of your ideal customers based on data and research.” Unfortunately, there isn’t a one-size fits all approach when it comes to creating buyer personas, which is why it is so important to establish your KPIs.
The number of buyer personas and their makeup will be unique to every organization, and they can shift over time. As a general rule of thumb, having 5-7 buyer personas is a good metric to aim for, but keep in mind this isn’t a hard and fast rule. Determining what your ideal customer looks like will help you better connect with your prospects by crafting unique marketing messages that resonates with each persona group.
How can I use personas in my marketing messaging?
Once you’ve established your organization’s personas, you can start connecting with the individuals within each group on a personal level. Your persona groups should have some commonality, such as job title, geographic location, company size, etc. When you’re crafting your messaging, make sure that your approach is unique to each group. If you have a buyer persona created around marketing executives and another for IT professionals, you shouldn’t be using the same language for each group. They are two different audiences who care about and respond to very different things. Your content should reflect that.
Do some research to understand each persona’s individual pain points and how your organization’s product or service can alleviate that. When creating your marketing content speak to each persona group in terms they will understand and on platforms they use. You may have one persona group who is active on social media and another that is more likely to engage with email marketing. Pay attention to those trends and use them to your advantage when connecting with your prospects.
A good marketing strategy doesn’t just happen, it requires constant analysis and adjustment. I hope you enjoyed this very high-level overview of marketing personas and connecting with your prospects. If you’d like more in-depth guidance, or need some additional help on getting started, contact us here.